December 1, 2021

4 Ways to Give Your Family a Financial Head Start in 2022

Money is often top-of-mind during the holiday season. And whether 2021 put the squeeze on your family’s finances or brought you an exciting year full of opportunities, 2022 offers a brand-new slate that allows you to look to the future with clarity and optimism.

4 Ways to Give Your Family a Financial Head Start in 2022

The first few weeks of a new year tend to set the tone for the rest of the year. By taking a proactive approach and developing a plan today, you can make sure you are ready to hit the ground running in the new year. Here are several ways to set your family up for success in 2022:

1. Set a “Loose Budget”

Before doing anything else, set a loose budget. This is especially important if you’ve recently switched jobs, received a promotion or if you anticipate significant changes to your household income. List the expenses you know you will incur, then parcel out the money you expect to have left over in surplus income. Consider what you would like to do with these funds. Would you like to increase your savings or investments?

2. Identify New Goals

Now that you have a basic budget, you’re ready to start planning. Begin by asking yourself this simple question:

In a perfect world, what would my family’s finances look like 12 months from now?

Of course, you’ll want to be realistic, but don’t be afraid to dream a little. Identify goals, set priorities, and be intentional about where you want to focus your financial resources. For example, you may want to set a goal of increasing the amount of money you contribute to your 529 college savings plan. Or you could choose to focus on setting aside cash to buy your teenager a used car on his sixteenth birthday. These are your family’s goals. No one else can decide them for you, so hold a family meeting, have a meaningful discussion and list the goals for everyone to see.

3. Adjust Automatic Contributions Accordingly

Based on any income fluctuations and/or changes in your financial goals, consider adjusting your automatic contributions to your Future Scholar 529 College Savings Plan. Doing so is as easy as logging into your account and toggling to the “Contribution” tab. Even if it’s just an extra $50 to $100 per month, every little bit adds up over time.

4. Send an eGift Invitation to Loved Ones

Are friends and loved ones asking for holiday gift lists for your children? Consider sending them an eGift invitation that allows them to contribute directly to your child’s Future Scholar account.

With eGift, you’ll remain in total control. You determine who gets an invitation and how the funds will be invested once received. eGift recipients won’t receive any personal information – just a custom link that they click to securely contribute to your child’s account. It’s a simple way to give your 529 account a boost at the end of the year!

Here’s to a Merry and Bright Financial Future

With year’s end in sight, your family not only has the perfect chance to pause and reflect, but also the ideal opportunity to look ahead! Whether it’s funding your child’s Future Scholar plan or setting family goals that allow you to enjoy more financial freedom, this is a time of celebration and preparation!